April 20, 2016

The Great Debate: At Adlai Stevenson University last week, Larry Fort, Caitlyn Miller, Nick Kelly, and Rachel Clein took on the personas of (in order) Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and John Kasich to tell us why we should vote for their candidate (Ted Cruz was a no-show).  All of them gave excellent reasons why their candidate is most qualified to be the president of the U.S.  Afterwards, the “candidates” and the audience had a spirited and sometimes heated exchange of views. At a caucus at the end of the debate, 25 supported Bernie, 15 supported Trump, and five each supported Hillary and Kasich.

PeoplearesayingIn another debate in Brooklyn, the Democratic candidates Hillary and Bernie gave those who watched a PhD-level education in politics. Who would you want to fix your car? Someone who perfectly understands the theoretical physics of an internal combustion engine, or someone who had gotten her hands dirty, and grease on her face, changing the oil and adjusting the carburetor?

One of the most heated exchanges was over the Israel-Palestine conflict. It was once American policy to attempt to be a neutral arbiter between the two. That has been increasingly difficult after 9/11/2001 and the Iraq War of 2003 (commonly agreed to be the worst foreign policy mistake in U.S. history). All U.S. politicians today pledge their strong support for Israel. “Strong,” however, appears to be a relative word. On a scale of support for Israel, Republicans generally are the most uncompromising in support of Israel, even calling for attacking suspected Iranian nuclear facilities. Bernie’s “strong support” questions America’s apparent agreement with virtually everything that is said by Benjamin Netanyahu, the hawkish Prime Minister of Israel. Bernie says that sometime “we are going to have to say that Netanyahu is not right all of the time.” And he argues that Israel’s response to attacks by Hamas was disproportionate to the threat.

Hillary, who, as Secretary of State, negotiated a cease-fire in 2012 with Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority, defended Israel’s right to defend itself from terrorists and rocket attacks that are a constant threat to Israel.

Republicans could learn a lesson about how to debate REAL issues, without calling anyone a “loser” or a “liar,” or questioning anyone’s anatomy.

Tuesday’s primary victory in New York should mean that Hillary can put Bernie in her rear-view mirror, but Bernie is vowing to continue the fight despite the long odds.

In other news: Earthquakes in Ecuador and Japan have killed nearly 300 people.

The Supreme Court heard arguments Monday on the constitutionality of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration which offer work permits to four million people. A decision is expected in June.

Five Biggest Things To Be Afraid Of: #1 Global Warming, #2 Zika Virus, #3 Donald Trump, #4 Terrorists, #5 Final Exams.

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